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Mother And Son Rescued From Creek

Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

National Park News

On the afternoon of April 26th, park dispatch received a request for assistance at a rescue that was in progress in a residential development next to the park. The park’s high-angle rescue team, lead by assistant team leader Michelle Schonzeit, responded and found that a family of three – a mother, father and son – had been hiking in a creek when the family dog was swept away by the fast current. The father attempted to rescue the dog and was swept downstream, sustaining significant injuries. The Bushkill Fire Department was able to reach the father and extract him from the creek; he was later flown to St. Luke's Hospital.  The mother, son and a neighbor entered the water in an attempt to help the father and were also swept downstream. The neighbor was rescued by the Bushkill Fire Department and later treated and released on scene. When the mother and son were located, they were clinging to a rock in a precarious area with steep cliffs and downstream hazards, including rapids and waterfalls. It was determined by the Bushkill Fire Department that they did not have the capability to rescue the mother and son, at which time the technical rescue was turned over to the National Park Service.  After setting up a raising and lowering system, ranger Troy Mueller was lowered into the creek, where he was able to extract both the mother and son. They were both hypothermic, having spent over an hour in the frigid waters, and were transported to a local hospital, where they were treated and later released.


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